Passenger vehicle sales in India started the new fiscal in top gear posting 14.68% growth in April, propelled by robust performance from market leader Maruti Suzuki India.
According to data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), domestic passenger vehicles (PV) sales rose to 2,77,602 units in April from 2,42,060 units in the same month last year.
Domestic car sales posted the biggest monthly growth in one-and-half years at 17.36% to 1,90,788 units as against 1,62,566 units in April last year. The previous highest growth in the segment was recorded in October 2015 when sales grew by 21.8%.
Mini segment cars and compact sedans led sales growth in passenger cars segment during the last month.
“Factors like commissioning of new manufacturing plants, new model launches led to strong growth in the passenger vehicle segment during the month,” SIAM deputy director general Sugato Sen told reporters here.
Elaborating further, he said the segment saw a push mainly due to Maruti growing over 23% during the month as supplies commenced from parent Suzuki’s Gujarat plant leading the firm to also de-congest production at its other facilities as well.
MSI had received a total of 10,000 units from its parent Suzuki’s Gujarat-based plant in 2016-17. This fiscal, the company expects supply of around 1.5 lakh units.
Despite a bright start to the new fiscal, SIAM, however stuck to its earlier growth forecast of 10-12% for the PV segment.
Last month, MSI continued its domination of the domestic PV space selling 1,44,081 units at a growth of 23.10%.
Rival Hyundai Motor India was a distant second with 44,758 units at a growth of 5.68% followed by home- grown Mahindra & Mahindra in the third spot with 19,325 units, down 14.7%.
Honda Cars India overtook Tata Motors to take the fourth spot with 14,480 units, up 38.09%, while Tata Motors sold 14,066 units during the month, up 15.01%.
In the two-wheeler segment, total sales in April increased by 7.34% to 16,74,796 units compared to 15,60,308 units in the year-ago month.
“In two-wheelers segment, scooters are doing pretty well. In fact, even in rural areas, people are increasingly going in for scooters,” Sen said.
Motorcycle sales were up marginally at 10,29,972 units as against 10,24,895 units a year earlier.
Market leader Hero MotoCorp sold 5,21,909 units during April as compared to 5,17,019 in the previous fiscal -- a marginal increase.
Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) overtook Bajaj Auto to occupy the second spot with bike sales of 1,83,182 units last month as against 1,50,711 units in the same month of the previous fiscal, a growth of 21.54%.
Bajaj Auto posted sales of 1,61,930 units as against 2,00,433 units in April 2016, down 19.2%.
Scooter sales in April were at 5,86,886 units compared to 4,68,368 units in the previous fiscal, up 25.3%.
Segment leader HMSI posted sales of 3,68,550 units during the month as against 2,63,324 in April 2016, up 39.96%.
Chennai-based TVS Motor Co posted a growth of 31.4% in its domestic scooter sales at 79,443 units as against 60,455 units sold in April 2016, becoming the number two player in the category.
Hero MotoCorp dropped to third position with sale of 63,746 scooters during the month, as compared to 83,506 units in the same period of last year, down 23.66%.
Sales of commercial vehicles were down 22.93% to 41,490 units in April, SIAM said.
The drop in sales in the segment during the last month was biggest since January 2009 when sales had declined by around 67%.
“After-effects of demonetisation still remain in the segment. Besides, there has been a pre-buy in the months of February and March due to the coming into force of BS IV emission norms from April,” Sen said.
Vehicle sales across categories registered an increase of 6.82% to 20,30,476 units from 19,00,848 units in April 2016.